Andrew Lincoln's nearly ten-year run as Rick Grimes on AMC's The Walking Dead will officially end during the ninth season of the show, which premieres this autumn.
After confirming the news during the show panel in Hall H This year, Lincoln told EW Radio that he wanted to spend more time with his wife and two children. He said that the show's Georgian locations make it difficult for him to see his family living in England.
"I have two young children, and I live in another country and they become less portable when they get older," Lincoln said. "It was so easy, it was time for me to come home."
Lincoln played "The Walking Dead's" main character every season since the show's first episode, "Days Gone Bye," premiering in The Halloween Night in 201
"Andy was always the guy, and the show will miss him, we'll miss him, there'll be a different mood, there's no substitute for him," Morgan said.
Norman Reedus described him as the "quarterback" of the cast and described their production process with Lincoln.
"He's the first call I get I wake up He calls me, we talk about the day when we go to work, we work, we talk about the day, at lunch he's in my caravan, and then we wrap him up and he calls me on the way home, that's how it was every day, "said Reedus.
The connection between Lincoln and the cast was evident when the actor received a standing ovation following his comic-con announcement.
"I love this show, it means everything to me, I love the people who make this show," said Lincoln.
"The Walking Dead" Season 9 will once again show Lincoln his role as Rick Grimes. The season premieres on 7 October.